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IS THERE A RIGHT AGE TO INTRODUCE BOOKS IN KIDS’ LIFE?

The answer is any time is a good time. We all have heard “Today a reader, tomorrow a leader.” by Margaret Fuller. Honestly even I believe that. Books open up so many horizons in front of us. They show us the whole new world, no matter how old and learned you are. Books hold the key to our wisdom and not just knowledge. So what’s the right age to introduce books to kids?

Reading books at early age helps children become more creative, helps in building vocabulary as well as language development. Once they start finding books entertaining, your worry about their gadget use and screen time will also go down.

“Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body.” – Richard Steele”

What can you do as a parent or care giver?

One of the most important tips for good parenting is, kids do what they see in a better way rather than what they have been told to do. So, if you want kids to read, for that first you have to start reading. Show them how books contribute in our life. How books shape our personality. It’s the easiest way to introduce books, to their lives.

Read regularly:

Read to kids regularly. Make it as a bedtime routine. Kids might not cooperate in the beginning if they are toddlers already, however they will accept it if the books are interesting. Kids are curious and they are always open to learn more.

Start early:

I have some friends who started reading to their babies right from the month they were born. As an elder we might think that babies won’t understand what is in the book. May be, they won’t but believe me they will surely understand that this is a special time they get to spend with you. Slowly the books will start grabbing their attention.

cloth books

Choices you can make:

Cloth books:

These books are also called Snuggle books. They are meant to be the first books for the new-borns. They are washable, soft, light weight and do not have sharp edges. Babies love to play snuggle, chew, try to tear them apart, but the books are sturdy. Generally, these books help babies in developing sense like touch as it has different textures like rough, soft, fury or woolly. The colours are bright and attractive.

You can search online or in book shops for Baby Touch: Snuggle cloth book or Good Night, Teddy

Sound books:

Sound books, Noisy books and sing along books all are entertainers. This is an attention grabbing and awesome way to introduce books. My daughter has a Peppa noisy book. I gave her when she was 18 months, now she is 4+ yrs. yet that book is one of her most favourites. These books help children relate a particular sound to a particular event or object.

Pop up books:

These books have a surprise element and that makes them hit with kids. Right from nature, community helpers to festivals. You can find pop up books about everything. Now a days, books related to famous cartoon characters are also available.

Touch and feel books:

Touch and feel books are the hard version of the snuggle books. They come with soft and sturdy covers. My son had a touch and feel book about beach and he could feel the sand on the beach though it.

These books help in hand eye coordination, sense of touch and feel as well as introduction to colours.

Flip flap books:

Flip Flap books are easy for kids to hold and turn pages. The flaps can be slider as well as like pick up. I mean they can be doors or windows. Kids love to move these flips and see what is hidden behind them, every time they pick the books to read. In kids book the story or narration becomes secondary as compared to the fun they can have while reading the books. Because at early stage attaching them to the books is more important than teaching them morals.

introduce books

Which books to introduce?

Here are few book suggestions. Introduce these books and try. These are completely based on my experience.

1.      The very hungry caterpillar

                Author/ Illustrator Eric Carle

What kids learn:

The very hungry caterpillar is one of the most famous kids’ books. There is so much to learn from them. Kids will learn Days of the week, colours, counting as well as about fruits. The process of Metamorphosis that is growth of a caterpillar to butterfly also gets introduced automatically.

2.      Giraffes can’t dance

Author: Giles Andreae

Illustrator: Guy Parker-Rees

What kids learn:

This book can be Read out loud for kids age 1 to 4 and read yourself for kids aged 5 to 7.

As we live in the global atmosphere, kids must learn to be inclusive. This book tells kids that everyone is different and its okay to be different. Inclusiveness, acceptance of self as well as others are the key learnings. It also helps in Building Confidence and self-esteem.

3.      We’re going on a bear hunt

PlaywrightMichael Rosen

Lyricist: Benji Bower

Illustrator: Helen Oxenbury

What Kids Learn:

It is said that a good book is one that teaches us something, without being direct. The journey about bear hunt is similar. It helps us understand internal conflicts. How to understand and resolve internal conflict and how to heal from the hurt.

4.      Dear Zoo:

Author/ Illustrator: Rod Campbell

What kids learn:

This is a great book for kids 12 months and above. It’s a pop-up book with some touch and feel experience too. It’s important to help kids in developing the sensory actions of kids. What is soft, hard, rough and smooth. Also introducing different animals to kids at this age is a good idea.

5.      Chicka Chicka Boom Boom

Authors: Bill Martin, Jr., John Archambault

What Kids Learn:

Musical or with rhythm introduction to upper- and lower-case alphabets. Its fun, this book was first published in 1989 and is still among the best seller for toddlers. The representation with colourful pictures and large font makes it attractive to kids.

All these books that I have suggested are available on the online platform. Depending on the age of your child you can choose a book and start reading it to them, its never late to start reading. Reading books reduces stress, helps in going to sleep easily, enhances emotional qualities like empathy, inclusivity, mannerism etc. Books also takes us into a different imaginary world, and helps in being creative.

Happy reading!!

If you are a reader, Do check out my post on 2 books for adults and kids alike.

This blog post is part of the blog challenge ‘Blogaberry Dazzle’ hosted by myself and Noor Anand Chawla, and happily SPONSORED BY RRE Studios and SHOWCASE Events.

This Post Has 28 Comments

  1. Prerna Wahi

    We introduced books for my son very early on and are so glad we did. I agree with your tips and have most of the books you listed.

    1. Shail Thosani

      Your list of books is very well researched and exhaustive. Books should be introduced to kids as early as possible to help them develop well.

  2. Alpana Deo

    Introducing books as early as when they are babies is a great way to develop their interest. Even babies respond to the storytelling when done expression and proper tone modulations. I have seen this in my kids. Loved the collection you recommended. We read all and still love to read them time to time.

    1. Jyoti

      I have introduced books at early age but still my child is not a reader . She like doing more of activities than reading . I m still struggling with her reading part . Your post has amazing list of books .

  3. Surbhi Prapanna

    I agree Ujjwal, reading is one of the best skill that open door of various learning opportunity of learning and also at the same time improve vocabulary and problem solving skills too. at my place, my little one is an avid reader and I feel so glad as a mom that since at young age, she is reading and learning a lot about different genre’s book.

  4. Abhijit Ray

    Reading habit if inculcated from early childhood would be such a blessing. A reading a book, preferably a good one, makes a person empathic towards his / her sorroundings and makes a person more caring. Reading habit can also be extended to study materia and a reader should be able to concentrate better and develop wider understanding of a topic under discussion. Lastly, a book can be a good friend in need and ward off loneliness.

  5. Swati Mathur

    I agree there is no particular age to introduce books in child’s life…earlier the better. I helps them to be more creative, empathetic and imaginative. Today;s generation is blessed to have books in different types.

  6. Sonia Madaan

    I agree books help to be creative, imaginative and also builds vocabulary. Loved the curated list. Will share with my sister having toddlers. Well both my kids are not in the habit, tried a lot. However I can see progress as my younger son picks up the books I read. But elder one has his own hobbies.

  7. I also started reading very early. During those times we had access to mostly comics as children’s books. these days, as you have rightly mentioned, there are many attractive options that can develop a love of reading in kids.

  8. Monidipa

    Well, these ideas are good. I don’t remember since when I started reading books but I remember my ma used to read a lot.

  9. Harjeet Kaur

    Wonderful list, Ujjwal..am so glad my son did what i did..Sr=tarted books when they were babies and now there is a whole range of them as u have rightfully pointed out.

  10. Priyanka Nair

    Very nice post Ujjwal. Very helpful indeed. Reading is one of the best skills any kid can acquire at an early age and yes, to make them fall in love with reading we must read and set examples to follow.

  11. Suhasini I.P.

    We introduced books to my kid when he was just 6 months old. Books are always the best friends one can have in life. Your selection of books is also good. My son has read all of them.

  12. Ritu Bindra

    These are excellent pointers for all the parents out there who want to inculcate the habit of reading into their kids. Kids learn by example, a child is more prone to pick up books if the parents too enjoy reading.

  13. Supriti Garg

    I couldn’t agree more.. anytime is a good time. the sooner the better. I have always believed in the power of books and introduced them to my son at an early age.. we try to read a book before bed and thats the best time we spend together.

  14. Payal Shankar

    Loved this post. Books are indeed the best gift we can give our little ones. My son enjoys reading and i hope he continues this good habit for life.

  15. Abha

    It’s really good if we introduce book early for young kids. It helps develop reading habits and interest. But again there is no right age to introduce books. Books you mentioned for young kids are really good books.

  16. I don’t think parents should wait for the right age. If properly put I think they must wait for the right cues to understand and introduce if they’re starting late.i did when my babies where in the womb so introduction of books early and adapting to the reading habit was much easier.

  17. Completely agree on this that introducing book at the early age always benefits the kids and parents up-to high extent, in engaging kids creatively. I am can see the good practice of this habit in my son’s behavior.

  18. Being a bookworm, I introduced books to my son when he was only 9 months old. He now regularly reads

  19. Sivaranjini. A

    A wonderful list of the book I want to read a few of these books. Hand-eye coordination what a post with such wonderful information 😊🙏🤗👏👏👏👏👏

  20. Urvashi

    I did a YouTube video almost 2 years back on this same topic. our ides are so similar. I feel books are the best gifts for kids on any day. love your recommendations. it is important to have books around for kids to start into reading. so keeping them with toys and near bed is the best tip I could give

  21. Vashi Baloria

    I feel reading books can be the best gift of life that we can give to the kids; i learnt to read at a very young age & intend to teach the kids the same. Loved the detailed & well researched books lists

  22. Srishti Rajeev

    I haven’t come across cloth book, the snuggle books, great reading content for kids. Yes, anytime is a good time, Books really opens up many dimensions for the child’s thinking process. The child believes that there is much more than just parents, the house and the neighbourhood, apart from the versatile mobile.

  23. Amritha Srinath

    I am a firm believer that reading begins from the womb. So it is never ever early to introduce books for children. My son has been offered all the cloth books, snuggle books, etc from a very early age. Today, he is five and he absolutely loves reading books. I believe reading opens up a new world for children. Also, the recommendations are absolutely bang-on!

  24. ruchita mathur

    I feel the right age to introduce is in the mothers womb. We think the child doesnot know about he outside world but it does

  25. Bhawna Shah

    It is really idea that if we want to inculcate the habit of reading then introduce books in early age. 👏👏 for giving us detailed post on a valuable topic.

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